European stocks struggled for gains on Wednesday as investors absorbed a mixed bag of earnings from Société Générale, A.P. Moeller-Maersk and other corporates, while U.S. equity futures rose.
The Stoxx Europe 600 index
rose 0.3% to 411 after a modest decline on Tuesday. But the German DAX
slipped 0.1% and the French CAC 40
and FTSE 100
were flat. Asian stocks had a robust session, with the China CSI 300 index
surging 2% ahead of the start of the China Lunar New Year holiday.
On firmer footing were U.S. stock futures
which pointed to a higher start for Wall Street following a lackluster session that saw the S&P 500
and Dow industrials
each snap six-session winning streaks. The Nasdaq Composite
eked out its 10th record close.
Investors are waiting for U.S. consumer prices data for January, with a speech coming as well from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell on the labor market. Data from Europe showed French industrial production falling for a second straight month in December, halting the recovery from the COVID-19-driven drop.
Among European stocks on the move, shares of Adyen
led the Stoxx 600 gainers with a nearly 10% gain after the Dutch paints company reported higher net profit for the second half of 2020 and lifted its long-term earnings margin target.
Also near the top of the gainers list, shares of Société Générale
rose around 3% after the French bank said it would launch a buyback in the fourth quarter, after net profit for the final quarter of 2020 fell less than expected and it also met guidance for 2020.
On the downside, shares of A.P. Moeller-Maersk
tumbled over 6%. The Danish shipping giant reported surging demand in the fourth quarter and spiking freight rates spiked due to bottlenecks across its supply chain that includes a lack of ships and containers.
Shares of Heineken
fell more than 2% after the Dutch brewer said it swung to a loss for 2020 due to pandemic effects, but laid out a target to restore its adjusted operating profit margin to around 17% by 2023. Heineken also said it expects improving market conditions in the second half of this year.